Supersized Library


Earlier this week I braved the rain and took a trip to the library on Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street in New York City, USA.  It’s also know as the Stephen A. Schwarrzman Building and as you can see it’s MASSIVE:


If you like the lions you’ll enjoy the lions made out of Lego inside:


I also found a famous bear in the children’s section:


But did they ever have an elephant come to visit? (we did!)

Elephant visits library


New York library is part of a network of 91 libraries throughout the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island. Leith Library is part of a network of 31 Libraries across Leith, Edinburgh and Portobello.


The Stephen A. Schwarrzman Building is 100 years old, 20 years older than us here at Leith.


We’re the first library in Edinburgh to have our own blog but the Edinburgh City Libraries network has a blog too – taleofonecity.

In New York they have 40 blogs, no joke! A blog for teachers, a blog in Spanish, a blog on food and one on hand-made crafts. There’s one for teens, one about faith and one on jazz.

But do they ever blog about their staff dancing with hula-hoops?


Social Media

They’re on twitter (@nypl) and whole host of other social media platforms but so are we!


They have a shop, phone boxes and a cafe. Computer rooms, exhibition spaces and loads of toilets.


But do they have a veggie market?


They have paintings on the ceilings and ornate light fittings!


But we have an Edinburgh Sketcher sketch on the wall:


(I know which I prefer)


The children’s area is relatively small considering the size of the library.


Just a little bit bigger than our children’s section but ours takes up around a quarter of our library!

Final Thoughts

So the library in New York is an amazing place and well worth a visit but hey, I’m glad to be back in Leith.
If you want to know more about what I was up to in New York you can read about it on my blog here.

About auntyemily

Screenwriter (CBeebies), science communicator, storyteller, author, podcaster and poet. @auntyemily on twitter (:
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5 Responses to Supersized Library

  1. Great photos, Emily. And interesting observations and comparisons. Thank you!

  2. Marianne Wheelaghan says:

    Ha ha ha! Brilliant, Emily. I wanted to got to visit this library when I was in New York and the day we went it was closed – grrrrr! So special thanks for giving me a peek inside. I love the pictures and the comparisons. What both libraries seem to share in spades is a commitment to keeping the reading experience fresh and alive and interesting for the library goes (apart from all the other stuff!). Can you be twinned with a library? 🙂

  3. Pingback: Making Connections at Library Conferences | Leith Library

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